New Anthems VI (Berlin) – A New Anthem for Germany


A–——Z presents New Anthems VI (Berlin) – A New Anthem for Germany, an interactive installation by Inkahoots inviting creative participation in a public dialogue about the critique and construction of contemporary nationalism and national identity.

With the growing global resurgence of ultra-nationalism, social, cultural and religious stereotypes and symbols are being used to exclude and divide. Today in Germany the successful postwar rejection of the radical right appears to be undermined by the electoral gains of the anti-European Union, anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim Alternative für Deutschland and with the serious violence of riots, like the one in Chemnitz.

Australian design studio Inkahoots is collaborating with A–——Z, the new space for Grafikdesign and the Buchstabenmuseum to create a new version of New Anthems in Berlin. The installation will display the most commonly cited line in Das Liedes der Deutschen (3. verse) by August Heinrich Hoffmann von Fallersleben, the current German national anthem: ‘Einigkeit und Recht und Freiheit für das deutsche Vaterland!’, where the words ‘Freiheit’ and ‘das deutsche Vaterland’ are omitted and replaced with LED screens enabling participants to input their own words via SMS, and rewrite the text. These contributions are catalogued online and become a dynamic archive of debate around issues of national identity, inclusion and exclusion.

To participate SMS: +49 157 3599 4499 to insert your contribution. Enter a word or short phrase for each LED screen separated by a comma: eg. ‘firstword,secondword’ or ‘short phrase,another short phrase’.

The New Anthems installations affirm national identity as dynamic and constructed, rather than fixed and natural: to misquote Richard White (1981) Inventing Australia: ”There is no ‘real’ Germany waiting to be uncovered. A national identity is an invention.“

For past versions Inkahoots have created custom designed sculptural typography using neon, fibre optics, recycled cardboard and timber, and giant helium-filled balloons. For New Anthems VI (Berlin) – A New Anthem for Germany they will be developing a site-specific interactive typographic sculpture using a mix of civic and commercial historical signage from the collection of the Buchstabenmuseum (‘the first museum in the world to collect letterforms from public spaces and display them as part of urban history’) and kindly provided for the duration of the installation. These historic letters from East- and West-Berlin will be assembled with internet connected LED screens enabling the display of user generated content. A website will enable real time listing of all displayed contributions – in this way all contributions are archived and
can be viewed offsite by anyone.

The work attempts to integrate graphic design’s potential regarding expressive modes of visual language with user generated digital interactivity, as a relational artwork that functions as a forum for creative public dialogue and cultural critique.

New Anthems VI (Berlin) – A New Anthem for Germany
with a presentation by Jason Grant from Inkahoots (in english)
Friday, June 14th 2019, 7 pm

Opening times:
Duration of the installation: June 14th until September 6th, 2019
The installation will be open to the public during the entire duration in the storefront space of A–——Z at Torstraße, Berlin-Mitte. The interaction is possible 24 hours every day of the week.

Hinweis: alle Angaben ohne Gewähr für Aktualität, Korrektheit und Vollständigkeit.